Michael Sfard has spent the past two decades fighting the occupation in Israeli courts. His new book dissects the moral dilemmas of engaging with the occupation's legal system, its role in making the status quo sustainable, and why, despite it all, he remains optimistic that Israel's military rule over the Palestinians will end. By Yossi Gurvitz "The Wall and the Gate: Israel, Palestine, and the Legal Battle for Human Rights", by Michael Sfard, Metropolitan Books, 2018, 528 pages. Michael Sfard is one of the preeminent human rights lawyers in Israel today, where for the past two decades, he has confronted the occupation on its own…Read More... | 5 Comments
The village that managed to unite the world behind the spirit of nonviolent Palestinian protest marks more than a decade of not only tear gas, night raids and tragedy, but also co-resistance and victories in the struggle against settlements, the separation barrier and the occupation. By Oren Ziv/Activestills.org Some 500 demonstrators marked 13 years of struggle against the separation barrier in the West Bank village of Bil’in on Friday. The demonstrators — Palestinians, Israelis, and international solidarity activists — marched toward the wall, where Israeli border police fired tear gas at them. Several activists suffered from tear gas inhalation, and one…Read More...
Perhaps finally learning the value of nonviolence from the villagers, the Israeli army did not disperse the weekly protest on Friday. Youth manage to pry open gate in the wall. Some 300 people — Palestinians, Israelis and internationals — took part in a protest march Friday from the West Bank village of Bil’in to Israel’s separation barrier, built on the village’s land, to mark 12 years of continuous popular struggle against the wall, Israel’s settlements, and its military occupation of Palestine. Unlike nearly every other Friday over the past 12 years, no soldiers came to break up the protest, an anomaly…Read More... | 13 Comments
"Activestills: Photography as Protest in Palestine/Israel," edited by Vered Maimon and Shiraz Grinbaum, Pluto Press (2016) The first time I truly began to grasp the potency of photojournalism was on Tel Aviv's Rothschild Boulevard in June 2011. It was barely a few days after a group of young Israelis decided to pitch tents on the city's most recognizable thoroughfare, launching what would soon come to be known as the social protest movement. By the end of that first week, Rothschild began to look like a cross-section of Jewish Israeli civil society, with activist groups from every strain imaginable setting up…Read More... | 2 Comments
Netanyahu didn't need the Mufti or a bomb diagram at this year's UN General Assembly. Just a few kind words about a Palestinian victim of Jewish terror, branding Israel as an economic powerhouse, and kissing up to the Americans. 1. Stealing the president's lines "Ahmed was the victim of a horrible terrorist act perpetrated by Jews… No words can bring comfort to this boy or to his family. Still, as I stood by his bedside I told his uncle, 'This is not our people. This is not our way'." Prime Minister Netanyahu, during his speech Thursday at the United Nations General Assembly,…Read More... | 8 Comments
Abdullah Abu Rahmah, one of the leaders of the 11-years-old Bil'in protests against the separation wall, has been arrested after confronting Border Police over the dispersal of the cycling event. Text and pictures by Oren Ziv Abduallah Abu Rahmah, one of the leaders of the Bil'in protest movements, was arrested on Friday during a bicycle race in the West Bank to mark the 68th anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba. Hundreds of Palestinian and international cyclists participated in the so-called "return ride" that kicked off in Ramallah and ended in the village of Bil'in, where grassroots protests against the occupation and…Read More...
When Sgt. Elor Azaria was caught on camera finishing off a wounded Palestinian knifeman and indicted for manslaughter, the IDF said rogue soldiers would always be brought to justice. The case of Bassem Abu Rahme, an unarmed protester who was fatally shot by an unknown soldier in 2009, shows that when given an opportunity to be lenient, the army will seize it. By Yesh Din (written by Yossi Gurvitz) On April 17th 2009, Bassem Abu Rahme was demonstrating against the separation wall in his West Bank village, Bil’in. After Israeli troops fired crowd-dispersal weapons and one demonstrator was hit, Abu…Read More... | 1 Comment
The West Bank village of Bil’in, along with supporters from Israel and abroad, march on the separation wall that has illegally annexed their agricultural lands. Bil’in has become a symbol of Palestinian non-violent resistance. By Oren Ziv/Activestills.org Hundreds of people — Palestinians, Israelis, and foreigners — took part in a march Friday to mark 11 years since the village of Bil’in started its non-violent popular struggle against the Israeli separation barrier, which annexed parts of the village’s agricultural land. Following afternoon prayers, the protesters marched along the same route that has been followed every Friday since 2005 — from the…Read More...
As 2015 comes to a close, +972 Magazine’s editors and bloggers look back at the year that was, and share the articles that most resonated with them – in no particular order. By +972 Magazine Staff Meet the new generation of Palestinians in Israel To most Jewish Israelis they don’t have names or faces. At worst they are rioters and stone-throwers waving Palestinian flags; at best they are a discriminated-against minority. Henriette Chacar sat down with four young, prominent, politically active Palestinian citizens of Israel to discuss their demands, their identity, how they are different than the generations that preceded them,…Read More...
Did a Palestinian activist see justice only because the soldier who shot him was an Arab? In a rare piece of positive news, Haaretz reported Saturday that the Jerusalem Magistrates' Court decided that 155,000 shekels ($40,200) should be paid in compensation to Rateb Abu Rahmeh, a Palestinian activist and university lecturer from the West Bank village of Bil'in. The decision was made after Abu Rahmeh filed a lawsuit against a Border Policeman who, in 2005, shot him in the leg with a sponge-tipped bullet during a weekly demonstration in Bil'in. The court found that the policeman had given a false…Read More...
Even after 11 years of struggle, the residents of Bil'in refuse to forget about the land that was taken from them. The year was 2006. The village Bil'in near Ramallah had already marked over a year of weekly protests against the separation barrier that cuts them off from their land. One day, during a hearing at the High Court of Justice over a petitioned against the route of the wall, Justice Aharon Barak wondered aloud: "Why do they protest there so often?" [tmwinpost] Nearly 11 years have passed since the residents of this small village decided they wanted to oppose…Read More...
Israel's Interior Ministry banned British peace activist Gary Spedding from the country for 10 years, claiming that he was an anti-Semitic liar who might start a riot. Unlike other activists who have suffered the same fate, Spedding isn't giving up without a fight. An Israeli court is slated to rule next month on a case involving a British human rights activist who was denied entry into the country, deported, and banned for 10 years, who claims that the Interior Ministry is targeting him for his political views. It all began on January 9, 2014. Gary Spedding, a 25-year-old British pacifist…Read More... | 2 Comments
What has four propellors and a camera? Participants in the weekly protests against the separation wall in the West Bank village of Bil'in were surprised Friday to find that the army was using a new tool to put down the demonstrations. For the first time, a small drone equipped with four propellors and a camera hovered above the protesters as they marched toward the wall and chanted slogans. I asked the IDF Spokesperson's Unit what the purpose of the drone was; I have yet to receive a response. The camera can be used for a number of purposes, although in…Read More... | 5 Comments
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